A mezze style falafel platter is great for parties, picnics, or an easy weeknight dinner.
There’s a delicious mix of flavors from falafel, hummus, baba ganoush, olives, veggies, and more.
It’s easy to personalize based on the season, and what’s in the refrigerator. And guests can gravitate towards their favorite flavors.
Plus, who doesn’t love a meal that’s totally shareable?
Some of my favorite types of meals are of the nibbly variety.
I love getting lots of little tastes – every one of them unique.
You get the gamut of flavors and textures.
And once you add in something satiating like falafel or hummus, you’ve basically got a whole meal.
That’s why like so many people, I’m drawn to feasting tables, grazing boards, and the like.
The variety of colors are endlessly eye-catching.
And although they may be trendy, snacking boards have been around for eons.
Mezze platters have long been popular in the Mediterranean and Middle East. (Mezze or meze means “taste and/or snack” in Arabic.) The small plate concept is similar to Spanish-style tapas.
The particular ingredients vary by region. But one of my favorite types of mezze is a falafel platter.
For this party platter, obviously golden brown falafel is the star of the show. Then it’s filled out with dips like hummus and baba ganoush, olives, and veggies.
A falafel appetizer plate is great for groups.
Each person can pick and choose which items they like the best for their own personalized plate. They can sample a little of this and a little of that.
It’s ideal for picky palates, because people can choose what they enjoy, and ignore what they don’t.
Although they’re often associated with parties, this falafel plate recipe can also be an easy weeknight dinner.
A lot of it can be made with store-bought ingredients. Then it’s just a matter of reheating and pulling out jars.
Use these falafel platter ingredients as a starting point.
It’s easy to adjust based on your own preferences, and what you have on hand.
Everything on the list is vegan.
And with the exception of the pita bread, everything is gluten free too. (For a GF option, either use GF bread, or use the veggies & falafel as dippers.)
Air fryer falafel (or oven baked): These substantive garbanzo bean balls are easy to make using canned chickpeas. No soaking or pre-planning required!
Air-fried falafel is ready in just 30 minutes. Baked falafel takes about 10 minutes more.
Hummus: This chickpea dip is simple to make in the food processor with a few pantry-friendly ingredients.
My favorite hummus recipe is extra creamy, thanks to aquafaba.
Baba ganoush: This smoky dip is similar to hummus, but with eggplant instead of chickpeas.
Vegan baba ganoush can be made in the air fryer or oven.
Tahini sauce: Tahini dressing is made with just 4 ingredients – tahini, lemon juice, salt, and cold water.
It’s a wonderfully creamy sauce that’s perfect for dunking falafel, or drizzling on top for finish.
Raw veggies: Use any colorful raw veg you like.
Cucumber slices, cherry tomatoes, carrots, sliced bell pepper, and/or radishes are all good options.
Pickled things: Fill out the board with briny things like olives, turnip pickles, pickled red onions, pickled asparagus, marinated artichoke hearts, and/or pepperoncini.
Homemade vegan feta: This almond cheese adds tang and creaminess.
Vegan feta cheese also freezes well, in case you want to make a big batch & stretch it out.
Pita bread: Cut pita into triangles and warm it. It’s ideal for scooping up creamy dips.
If you’d prefer, you can also use lavash, toasted crostini, or crackers.
Here are a few more ideas to whet your appetite.
- Flavored hummus: Dill pickle hummus, sun-dried tomato hummus, or kalamata olive hummus
- Jalapeño cashew cheese
- Olive tapenade
- Roasted or grilled veggies
- Stuffed grape leaves (dolmas) with sliced lemon
- Warmed Castelvetrano olives
- Fried artichoke hearts
- Fried olives
- Roasted garlic
- Roasted chickpeas
- Parsley or cilantro
- Marcona almonds
- Colorful fruits like figs, berries, grapes, or cherries
Step by step instructions
(For full ingredient amounts, keep scrolling to the recipe box at the bottom of this post.)
- Make recipes for falafel, baba ganoush, hummus, tahini dressing, and vegan feta cheese.
- Cut the pita bread into wedges & warm in the oven or air fryer.
- Wash & slice vegetables, and drain pickled items from their jars.
- Find a board or tray to display all of the items. A large charcuterie-style cutting board works well here. (If you’re planning on transporting the platter, a baking sheet or casserole dish works well because of the rimmed sides.)
- Place small bowls on the board to anchor the design. Fill them with hummus, baba ganoush, vegan feta, as well as any small items you want to keep together.
- If you like, finish the hummus and baba ganoush with a drizzle of extra virgin olive oil or tahini dressing. Hummus is also nice with sumac or Everything But the Bagel seasoning.
- Fill the remaining board with falafel, sliced veggies, and toasted pita.
This falafel veggie plate comes together even more quickly using some store-bought shortcuts.
- Instead of homemade falafel, use boxed falafel mix or frozen falafel. (Trader Joe’s dill pickle falafel is fun for a twist.)
- Instead of making hummus and baba ganoush, buy containers of any pre-made brands that you enjoy.
- Instead of homemade vegan feta, use store-bought. I recommend Violife, Trader Joe’s, or Herbivorous Butcher brands.
- Instead of committing to a full jar of olives, stop by your grocery store olive bar.
- Vegan tzatziki sauce from Trader Joe’s would also go well here. It’s in their refrigerated section.
Because of the different components, this is a good make-ahead meal. Or it can be a part of meal planning.
You can make the dips ahead of time, wash & slice veggies, or even roll the falafel into balls.
For the best texture, I recommend actually cooking the falafel right before you need it. But in a pinch, it can be reheated. See reheating directions at the bottom this post.
Great for warm or cold weather
This colorful appetizer is well suited for summer or winter gatherings.
For summer parties
Mezze platters are welcome in the summer, because a lot of the items on the plate don’t require heating.
Just remove lots of briny things from jars, chop fresh veggies, and blend a few dips.
Three of the heated items can be prepared in the air fryer – falafel, baba ganoush, and warmed pita.
The air fryer doesn’t have to be preheated like the oven. And it doesn’t warm up the kitchen.
For winter gatherings
During cold weather months, it’s nice to add more cooked vegetables like roasted cauliflower, as opposed to raw.
You can serve the baked feta right out of the oven, as well as warmed Castelvetrano olives instead of cold.
How to store leftovers
Store any leftovers separately in their own covered containers in the refrigerator.
Leftover hummus, baba ganoush, and falafel will last about 4 days.
Reheat falafel in the air fryer by cooking at 400 degrees for about five minutes or until warmed throughout.
Leftover falafel can be repurposed in a variety of ways:
- Put them in a falafel sandwich
- Add them to a falafel bowl
- Serve them along with a tomato cucumber salad
- 1 recipe hummus
- 1 recipe baba ganoush
- 1 recipe tahini dressing
- Drizzle of extra virgin olive oil optional
- Sprinkle of Everything But the Bagel seasoning or sumac (optional)
- 1 recipe falafel
- 1 cup cherry tomatoes
- 1 cucumber sliced
- 6 radishes
- ¼ to ½ cup kalamata olives
- ¼ cup pickled red onions
- ¼ to ½ cup pickled vegetables turnips, pepperoncini, marinated artichokes
- 1 (12 ounce) package pita bread cut into wedges & warmed
- Put hummus and baba ganoush into serving bowls. If you like, finish each of them with a drizzle of extra virgin olive oil or tahini dressing. On the hummus, sprinkle Everything But the Bagel seasoning or sumac (optional).
- Put the following onto a tray or charcuterie board: bowl of hummus, bowl of baba ganoush, bowl of tahini dressing, falafel, cherry tomatoes, sliced cucumber, radishes, Kalamata olives, pickled red onions, and other pickled vegetables. Finish with warmed wedges of pita bread.